As we make our way through Louisiana we drive on elevated roads through the swamps and bayous. Now and then we encounter signs for cracklins and boudin and eventually cross the Mississippi River. This means we are officially in the east.
We meander our way through town and get to the entrance of Fairview-Riverside State Park which lies on the north side of Lake Pontchartrain along the Tchefuncte river. The south side of the lake is New Orleans. The park has a beautiful house at the entrance which is used for camper registration.
The campground has one main large loop of campsites and then another small loop in the back. Our campsite was in the back loop (Campground 2) along the river by the small boat launch. It was a great site location.
Campground: Fairview-Riverside State Park
Location: Madisonville, Louisiana
Site: CI069 (Loop Campground 2)
Comments: A beautiful campground and we lucked out and got a great site with views of the water. Campground 2 felt smaller and more quaint than the front main loop. Sites in Louisiana State Parks are designated as Improved or Not Improved. Improved means there are hookups. We had an improved site hence the letter I in the site number (we assume).
The park has a small boat launch (near our site) along with a boardwalk for meandering through the swamp along with land along the river which offer nice views. The park is filled with big oak trees and lots of acorns on the ground to walk on and make crunching sounds (it is addicting just like walking on bubble wrap). There is an old cemetery which is fenced in and looks abandoned.
The park is also home to the Otis House which was built in the 1880’s and was the family home of a local sawmill owner, William Theodore Jay. In the 1930’s it was purchased and renovated by Frank Otis. The house is on the National Register of Historic Places and is now a museum which is available for touring.
We really like the Madisonville and Mandeville area of Louisiana. It is a beautiful area with a nice bike trail (Tammany Trace Bike trail) and situated close to the toll bridge over Lake Pontchartrain for easy access to New Orleans.